Old Map of Catalonia & Roussillon by Visscher, 1690: Barcelona, Tarragona, Girona, Perpignan, Pyrenees
Old Map of Catalonia & Roussillon by Visscher, 1690: Barcelona, Tarragona, Girona, Perpignan, Pyrenees
Old Map of Catalonia & Roussillon by Visscher, 1690: Barcelona, Tarragona, Girona, Perpignan, Pyrenees
Old Map of Catalonia & Roussillon by Visscher, 1690: Barcelona, Tarragona, Girona, Perpignan, Pyrenees

Old Map of Catalonia & Roussillon by Visscher, 1690: Barcelona, Tarragona, Girona, Perpignan, Pyrenees

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  • Best size: 16x20in (40.5x51cm) or larger
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Immerse yourself in the rich history and intricate geography of the 'Accuratissima principatus Cataloniae et comitatuum Ruscinonis, et Cerretaniae descriptio', a captivating map crafted by Nicolaes Visscher II in 1690. Translated into English, the map's title reads, 'The Most Accurate Description of the Principality of Catalonia and the Counties of Roussillon and Cerdanya'. As you explore this meticulously detailed map, you will find yourself transported back to the late 17th century, when Catalonia was a thriving principality within the larger area now known as Spain.

Each city and landmark is rendered with meticulous attention to detail, from the bustling metropolis of Barcelona to the ancient city of Tarragona. Girona, a city steeped in history and culture, and Perpignan, a city known for its vibrant Catalan culture, are also beautifully depicted. The map also includes the stunning Catalan Pyrenees Regional Natural Park, a testament to the diverse landscapes contained within this region.

This map is not merely a geographical representation; it's a historical artifact that offers a glimpse into the political divisions and administrative boundaries of the time. The regions of Roussillon and Cerdanya, for instance, are clearly delineated, reflecting their historical significance. Waterways, forests, canals, and mountains are all intricately etched onto the map, while decorative cartouches and a compass rose add to its aesthetic appeal.

Hand-colored and engraved, the 'Accuratissima principatus Cataloniae et comitatuum Ruscinonis, et Cerretaniae descriptio' is more than a map—it's a work of art. The relief shown pictorially brings a unique depth to the landscape, making this map a truly immersive experience. As you delve into the details of this exquisite piece, you'll discover a rich tapestry of history, culture, and geography that is sure to captivate any lover of cartography or history.

Some of the significant locations shown on this map:

Principality of Catalonia:

  1. Barcelona - Known as Barcino in Roman times, it was the capital of the Principality of Catalonia.
  2. Tarragona - Known as Tarraco during the Roman Empire, it was one of the most important Roman cities in the Iberian Peninsula.
  3. Girona - Known as Gerunda in ancient times, it was a significant city with a rich Jewish history.
  4. Lleida - Known as Ilerda in ancient times, it was a key location during the Second Punic War.
  5. Reus - Known for its rich architectural heritage, it was an important center for trade and agriculture.
  6. Tortosa - Located on the banks of the Ebro River, it was a key strategic point during the Reconquista.
  7. Vic - Known as Ausa in ancient times, it was an important episcopal see.
  8. Manresa - Known for the Cave of Saint Ignatius, a place of pilgrimage.
  9. Igualada - An important center for tanning and textile industries.
  10. Vilafranca del Penedès - Known for its wine production, particularly cava.
  11. Cervera - Chosen as the site for the University of Barcelona in the 18th century.
  12. Olot - Known for its volcanic landscape, part of the Garrotxa Volcanic Zone Natural Park.
  13. Figueres - Birthplace of the famous artist Salvador Dalí.
  14. Sant Cugat del Vallès - Known for its medieval monastery.
  15. Sabadell - An important industrial city during the 19th century.
  16. Terrassa - Known for its Romanesque churches.

County of Roussillon:

  1. Perpignan - The capital of the County of Roussillon, known for its Palace of the Kings of Majorca.
  2. Céret - Known for its Museum of Modern Art.
  3. Prades - Known for its summer chamber music festival.
  4. Elne - Known for its ancient cathedral.
  5. Thuir - Known for its production of Byrrh, a popular aperitif.

County of Cerdanya:

  1. Puigcerdà - The capital of the County of Cerdanya, known for its bell tower and Romanesque church.
  2. Llívia - A Spanish exclave located within French territory.
  3. Bellver de Cerdanya - Known for its Romanesque bridge.
  4. Alp - Known for its ski resorts.
  5. Bolvir - Known for its archaeological site.

Notable natural attractions:

  • Catalan Pyrenees Regional Natural Park - A stunning natural park spanning the Catalan Pyrenees.
  • Ebro River - The longest river in Spain, known for its rich biodiversity.
  • Garrotxa Volcanic Zone Natural Park - A unique natural area with over 40 volcanoes.
  • Cap de Creus - The easternmost point of mainland Spain, known for its stunning views.
  • Montseny Natural Park - A UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Notable historical events:

  • War of the Reapers (1640-1652) - A conflict that led to the brief declaration of the Catalan Republic.
  • Siege of Barcelona (1651) - A key event during the War of the Reapers.
  • Treaty of the Pyrenees (1659) - Ended the French-Spanish War, leading to the cession of the northern part of Catalonia to France.

Please double check the images to make sure that a specific town or place is shown on this map. You can also get in touch and ask us to check the map for you.

This map looks great at all sizes: 12x16in (30.5x41cm), 16x20in (40.5x51cm), 18x24in (45.5x61cm), 24x30in (61x76cm), 32x40in (81.5x102cm), 40x50in (102x127cm), 48x60in (122x153cm) and 56x70in (142x178cm), but it looks even better when printed large.

I can create beautiful, large prints of this map up to 90in (229cm). Please get in touch if you're looking for larger, customised or different framing options.

The model in the listing images is holding the 16x20in (40.5x51cm) version of this map.

The fifth listing image shows an example of my map personalisation service.

If you’re looking for something slightly different, check out my collection of the best old maps of Europe and European cities to see if something else catches your eye.

Please contact me to check if a certain location, landmark or feature is shown on this map.

This would make a wonderful birthday, Christmas, Father's Day, work leaving, anniversary or housewarming gift for someone from the areas covered by this map.

This map is available as a giclée print on acid free archival matte paper, or you can buy it framed. The frame is a nice, simple black frame that suits most aesthetics. Please get in touch if you'd like a different frame colour or material. My frames are glazed with super-clear museum-grade acrylic (perspex/acrylite), which is significantly less reflective than glass, safer, and will always arrive in perfect condition.

My standard frame is a gallery style black ash hardwood frame. It is simple and quite modern looking. On maps up to 36 inches (91cm) the frame is 1.5-3cm (0.6in to 1in) wide. I use thicker frames on larger maps - usually between 35 and 60mm (1.4in to 2.4in).

In all cases I use super-clear acrylic (perspex/acrylite) for the frame glass. It's lighter and safer than glass - and it looks better, as the reflectivity is lower.

All frames are provided "ready to hang", with either a string or brackets on the back. Very large frames will have heavy duty hanging plates and/or a mounting baton. If you have any questions, please get in touch.

See some examples of my framed maps and framed canvas maps.

A few different frame colours are available for free (black, brown, white, oak and antique gold). Custom framing and mounting/matting is available if you're looking for something else.

Alternatively, I can also supply old maps on canvas, foam board, cotton rag and other materials.

If you want to frame your map yourself, please read my map size guide first.

For most orders, delivery time is about 3 working days. Personalised and custom made maps take longer, as I have to do the personalisation and send it to you for approval, which usually takes a day or two.

Please note that for larger framed orders (over 40in/100cm), and some other framed sizes, the delivery time will be closer to 7-10 days.

If you need your order to arrive by a certain date, please contact me before you order so that we can find the best way of making sure you get your order in time.

I have specialist printing and framing facilities in 17 countries around the world. This means your map will be made locally, which cuts down on delivery time and reduces the chance of your map being damaged during delivery. There won't be any extra taxes or duties to pay, and we'll put less CO2 into the air.

All of my maps are well packaged and sent in a rugged tube if unframed, or surrounded by foam if framed.

I try to send out all maps within 1 or 2 days of receiving your order, though some products (like face masks or mugs) can take longer to make.

If you select Express Delivery at checkout your order we will prioritise your order and send it out by 1-day courier (Fedex, DHL, UPS, Parcelforce).

We can sometimes do next-day delivery if you order before 10am. But usually it's best to contact me first before you order.

Read my full delivery and local production guide

My maps are extremely high quality reproductions of original maps.

I source original, extremely rare maps from libraries, auction houses and private collections around the world, restore them at my London workshop, and then use specialist giclée inks and printers to create beautiful maps that look even better than the original.

My maps are printed on acid-free archival matte (not glossy) paper that feels very high quality and almost like card. In technical terms the paper weight/thickness is 10mil/200gsm. It's perfect for framing.

I print with Epson ultrachrome giclée UV fade resistant pigment inks - some of the best inks you can find.

I can also make maps on canvas, cotton rag and other exotic materials.

Learn more about how the Unique Maps Co. sources and restores old maps

Map personalisation

If you're looking for the perfect anniversary or housewarming gift, I can personalise your map to make it truly unique. For example, I can add a short message, or highlight an important location, or add your family's coat of arms.

The options are almost infinite. Please see my map personalisation page for some wonderful examples of what's possible.

To order a personalised map, select "personalise your map" before adding it to your basket.

Get in touch if you're looking for more complex customisations and personalisations.

If you are not happy with your unique map for any reason, contact me for a no-quibble refund.

I am very confident you will like your old map. I have been doing this since 1984. I'm a 5-star Etsy seller. I have sold tens of thousands of maps and have over 1,500 real 5-star reviews.

I use a unique process to restore my maps that is massively time consuming and labour intensive. Hunting down the original maps can take months. I use state of the art and eye-wateringly expensive technology to scan and restore the maps. As a result, I guarantee my maps are a cut above the rest - that's why I can offer a no-quibble refund.

Almost all of my maps look amazing at large sizes (200cm, 6.5ft+) and I can frame and deliver them to you as well, via special oversized courier. Contact me to discuss your specific needs.

Fill in the form below, message me on WhatsApp, or call the workshop on 020 3286 8802